I grew up eating pork ribs in Ohio, which is traditional in the Midwestern United States as well as in the South. If I were from Texas, though, I’d probably have grown up eating beef ribs. Different parts of America have different rib styles and barbecue sauce preferences. Down in the Deep South, barbecue sauce tends to be sweeter, while in North Carolina it is vinegar based. Hawaii is an entirely different story when it comes to barbecue. Pork is the primary meat featured, and the barbecue sauce reflects the Asian immigrant influence on the culture there. The wasabi, honey, and soy glaze in this recipe were inspired by a sauce from a Hawaiian chef friend, who learned it from Asian Americans in Hawaii. There is a gentle balance between wasabi and soy flavors in this sauce, which is totally craveable. Pork is the best meat to allow these ingredients to shine. —Kenny Gilbert, from his new cookbook Southern Cooking, Global Flavors
Get Gilbert’s recipe for jerk-spiced spareribs here.
Get Gilbert’s recipe for coffee-rubbed spareribs with poblano apple slaw here.